Plans for convention centers to be discussed Wednesday

Convention Centers mean business for city
(Source: KAIT)
(Source: KAIT)

JONESBORO, AR (KAIT) - Two separate convention center plans are moving forward.

The Keller Family and O'Reilly Hospitality Management both have plans for a convention center and hotel project in Jonesboro.

The two groups have obtained the land for the project and presented their ideas to the A&P Commission for funding.

Wednesday the A&P Commission will discuss both projects and see which one they will fund and for how much.

Here is a look at where both projects will be and what each entails:

O'Reilly Hospitality Management Embassy Suites and Convention Center Project

  • Located on Arkansas State University campus on the old track
  • 40,000 square feet of land
  • 202 room Embassy Suites
  • Convention Center
  • Houlihans Restaurant and Bar
  • Estimated cost for total project - $50 million
  • University is leasing the land to O’Reilly for 50 years
  • Estimated completion date 2018

Keller Family Hyatt Place and Convention Center

  • Located along Browns Lane Access Road near the future I-555
  • 37,000 square feet of land
  • 159 room Hyatt Place
  • Convention Center
  • Space for second hotel in the future
  • Keller family owns the land
  • Estimated completion date mid-2017

The Jonesboro Chamber of Commerce said any convention center would be great for the city.

"The realization of what a convention center does is that dollar turns over so many times from convention goers whether it is eating in restaurants, entertainment, buying gas, or going to the convenience store whatever it is and it can be a game changer for your community," Cheri White, Vice president of the chamber said.

Since the announcement of both projects, several people have come out in support of them.

Haag Brown, NEA Baptist, St. Bernards, and Tiger Correctional Services have all announced their support for the O'Reilly project on A-State's campus.

Mayor Harold Perrin has said in multiple reports, he supports the project that came through first, which according to him was Keller Family project.

Copyright 2016 KAIT. All rights reserved.

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